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Overshadowed By My Best Friend
April 1, 2014 10:14 AM

I'm in my third year at a fairly remote technical school. My best friend and roommate is the school sports star, has plenty of money, and is even famous outside of our school. Meanwhile I'm struggling in all of these areas. I'd like to be seen as more than just a sidekick and I want to contribute more than just comic relief. At the same time, I do feel like we have a solid friendship based on sharing some extraordinary experiences. Attending this school is a family tradition, so going somewhere else is out. Is there some magic way to step out of the shadows and transform into my own person?
posted by gingers4eva to Human Relations around (19 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Do you have any other friends you can build stronger relationships with?
posted by ocherdraco at 10:08 PM on March 31, 2014 [2 favorites]

Well, this will sound kind of weird, but if you could try and force him into some kind of accident, and then make him dependent on you for later success, that might give you a sense of purpose.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 11:12 PM on March 31, 2014 [2 favorites]

Trust me, in another year or so, you'll wonder why you were ever worried about something like this.
posted by kagredon at 11:22 PM on March 31, 2014 [3 favorites]

Introduce your friend to Comic Sans. Then you can email each other in a lighthearted semi handwritten way. They will thank you for improving their life with this whimsical font.
posted by a humble nudibranch at 11:27 PM on March 31, 2014 [6 favorites]

You are going to have a rough time of it, because this type of jealousy will drive a wedge between any friendship you might have. Just be willing to let things go and realize that maybe he doesn't see things the way you do and work towards getting through school alive.
posted by daq at 11:46 PM on March 31, 2014

Steal his girlfriend.
posted by loquacious at 11:58 PM on March 31, 2014 [41 favorites]

I say it's time for you to go out on a limb. Don't be afraid to make a big splash of your own!
posted by rouftop at 12:06 AM on April 1, 2014 [4 favorites]

Are there any extracurricular clubs that you can join that he wouldn't necessarily be interested in? It's important to be aware that even technical skills can be applied in a lot of different ways. Maybe you could use those skills to make some money and gain some control over your own life. You don't have to follow the same path as your friend and family. Are there any rival groups at your school which might be a better fit for you than your BFF?

Or alternatively get a smart girlfriend to make him jealous.
posted by aaanastasia at 4:54 AM on April 1, 2014

Set him up with your sister, it'll be fine.
posted by FritoKAL at 5:37 AM on April 1, 2014 [18 favorites]

Eventually you might just have to go off on your own to get a break from him and grow up a little. If you bring a flashlight, you can find your way back -- and you just might find a way to help him out of a dangerous situation when you return.
posted by jeather at 5:54 AM on April 1, 2014

You are not going to be able to weasel your way out of this one.
posted by Rock Steady at 6:05 AM on April 1, 2014 [8 favorites]

Look at it this way--he might be the school superstar, but the girl he likes still likes you more!
posted by xenophile at 7:14 AM on April 1, 2014

I've looked at some of your other questions, and -- I know you feel unwanted by your family, but it seems clear that they love you, and your friend's parents were killed, he was brought up by abusive relatives, and as soon as he finds another parent figure they end up killed, too. So maybe cut him a bit of slack.
posted by jeather at 7:24 AM on April 1, 2014 [8 favorites]

It might help to build bonds with him - can you get him involved with your family life and bridge the gap between you, there? If he - just being hypothetical here - maybe stayed with your family on vacations or perhaps grew closer to one of your siblings as well, it might help get you past that "sidekick" feeling into a more integrated relationship.
posted by rmd1023 at 8:10 AM on April 1, 2014 [2 favorites]

Do you think he's uncomfortable because of that time you ejaculated loudly during class?
posted by nicodine at 9:04 AM on April 1, 2014 [2 favorites]

Way to assume genders when OP avoided pronouns. Come on guys.
posted by mokudekiru at 10:25 AM on April 1, 2014 [3 favorites]

Guys, you really need to quit with the comments about OP's crush/girlfriend, she's a Mefi member and do we really need a 7 volume metatalk?
posted by FritoKAL at 10:42 AM on April 1, 2014 [14 favorites]

I remember you from previous questions. You're still young and trying to figure out your way, and school is really difficult at this age. It's harder when you're comparing yourself to the star student, and harder still when you're in all the same classes. Not to mention pressure from your family! My advice is to hang in there, as hard as it is. You may not have the same talents as your friend, and you may not be as popular, but you've got tons of potential and you'll find something you're good at. Keep believing in yourself and standing up for what is right, and in three or four years you'll grow into a brave, smart, kind, and surprisingly attractive young man, with accomplishments all your own.

EDIT: Oops, sorry, I had you confused with that kid who asked about his toad and his grandmother. I don't really have any advice for you, OP. Mods, please delete my answer.
posted by Metroid Baby at 10:54 AM on April 1, 2014 [9 favorites]

Some people peak in adolescence. Give them their fifteen minutes and everybody will forget about them soon enough.
posted by Sequence at 12:04 PM on April 1, 2014

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